Who is Miss Abigail?

Abigail Grotke
Silver Spring, MD
email: missabigail at missabigail dot com
twitter: @DearMissAbigail

Find me on…

Get the feed


Miss Abigail has a collection of over 1,000 classic advice books, spanning from 1822 to 1978 and covering a variety of topics, from love and romance to etiquette and charm. The collection sparked the idea for this site, then a book, Miss Abigail's Guide to Dating, Mating, and Marriage, which has inspired an Off-Broadway production of the same name!


Archive for October, 2008

Miss Abigail Officially Endorses…

Friday, October 31st, 2008

Barack and Michelle Obama and Joe and Jill Biden! Based strictly not on their policies, of course, or their ability to govern this fine nation, but on some Miss Abigail-related silliness.

Heck, I just like the Obama courting Michelle story. Michelle fell hard, but not at first. Perhaps she was reading The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Manhunting and wanted to be sure she had the right guy. And I know some people were put off by their fist bump, but I found it endearing.

Obama’s VP pick, Biden, passionately caring for his kids after his first wife and daughter die in a tragic car accident. And then had a date with former-model-then-teacher Jill by chance after spotting her in a newspaper ad. They went on to marry and have a daughter, and build their family together. What’s not to love?

Now the McCains and Palins. Miss Abigail just can’t give a thumbs up on all that’s gone on there. I know McCain’s first wife forgave him for his affair with Cindy (and the eventual demise of their marriage), but I don’t know, seems a bit disgraceful to me. Although you have to give props to McCain for hanging onto a woman 17 years younger. Perhaps he has read Sex till Seventy… and After, by Franz Halda.

Miss Abigail really is having a hard time with the Palins. My goodness. So much to worry about there, particularly with her now-famously pregnant daughter. First of all, I’d recommend that the whole family read What About Teen-Age Marriage by Jeanne Sakol, particularly the chapter on “Babies–they’re not dolls.” Or perhaps they should have read, maybe a few years ago, Facts of Life and Love for Teen-Agers by Evelyn Mllis Duvall. That might have helped fend off some of their current problems. I guess there is still time to seek out assistance. There’s always Dr. Spock to lean on in troubling times.

So that’s my official fluffy endorsement. Too late to make it on Meet the Press, but maybe it will be enough to tip the election this week. After all, you never know what the undecideds are waiting for to make their decision.


New Book on Emily Post

Saturday, October 25th, 2008

Over the last few years I’ve been in contact off and on with author Laura Claridge, who just published a book about Emily Post titled Emily Post: Daughter of the Gilded Age, Mistress of American Manners. I haven’t gotten my copy yet but did spot this write up in Slate this week. If you are an etiquette fan, this book should be on your shelf!

Not exactly GOOD advice…

Wednesday, October 8th, 2008

I stumbled across this today at work, an exhibit from the Stanford School of Medicine titled Not a Cough in a Carload: Images from the Tobacco Industry Campaign to Hide the Hazards of Smoking. Sounds fun, doesn’t it? Actually, browsing some of the “Images by Theme” is pretty entertaining (if not a bit scary). Check out “Brides Smoking” and “Targeting Women” if you want to stay on a Miss Abigail theme… And of course, the “Infants and Children” images! Yikes.

Hello from London!

Thursday, October 2nd, 2008

I’m writing from London, here this week for a work conference and meetings at the British Library. Today’s my one free day off, so the musician and I are about to head out for a canal ride and market browsing, and maybe some other low-key sightseeing. I’ve been here before, once in high school (when I happened to end up in Harrods at the moment when it was bombed), and a few years back, when I had a column (keep reading on page 2 and 3) in the London Times Saturday magazine, I met my editor for lunch as I was heading through town to Scotland.

Anyway, it’s fun to be back although London (at least the street that the British Library is on), is quite busy, a bit overwhelming. I guess I’ve gotten used to the slower pace of D.C.

We’ve decided to avoid temptation and not travel over to Rochester where there’s apparently a fabulous used bookshop. A fan from the U.K. inquiring about Emily Post’s publishing history just turned me on to it but I’m afraid I’d end up carrying too many books home on the plane!